Troopers

The Wisconsin State Patrol Troopers identified in the Dec. 9 police chase and shooting were identified by the DOJ on Wednesday as, from left to right, Trooper David Heinisch, Trooper Keegan Williams, and Trooper Alexander Polizzi.

The person who was involved in a shootout with State Patrol officers last week in Fort Atkinson was believed to have been a suspect in a bank robbery that occurred in Monona earlier that day.

The driver, Joseph R. Crawford, age 23, died of multiple gunshot wounds after Wisconsin State Patrol Troopers attempted to stop two suspects in a vehicle in Johnson Creek on Dec. 9 that led to a chase and gunfire, according to the Department of Justice, who is handling the investigation along with the Division of Criminal Investigation.

The DOJ said the troopers were not aware of the bank robbery investigation when they attempted the traffic stop. The investigation of the bank robbery is being led by the Monona Police Department and the FBI.

At approximately 12:30 p.m. on Dec. 9, the Wisconsin State Patrol attempted a traffic stop for speeding on Highway 26 between Watertown and Johnson Creek.

The driver of the vehicle was identified as Crawford. There also was one passenger, Desmond Watkins, 22, inside the vehicle.

The vehicle Crawford was driving stopped for a short time, and only Watkins fled the vehicle, then the vehicle fled the scene. Watkins was later apprehended.

The Wisconsin State Patrol pursued the vehicle from Johnson Creek on Highway 26 toward Fort Atkinson. While pursuing, Crawford fired shots from the vehicle at law enforcement, according to the DOJ.

The chase continued southbound on Highway 26 and police placed road spikes in the road. The vehicle Crawford was driving struck the spikes and exited Highway 26 at Highway 12 and came to a stop in the median. Crawford exited the vehicle with a handgun and attempted to carjack a civilian. Three Wisconsin State Patrol Troopers then discharged their weapons and struck the subject, according to the DOJ.

Law enforcement began life-saving measures on Crawford who died of multiple gunshot wounds at the scene.

No law enforcement personnel or other involved individuals were injured during the incident.

The involved troopers from Wisconsin State Patrol have been placed on administrative leave, per department policy. The troopers are: Trooper Keegan Williams, five years of law enforcement experience, Trooper Alexander Polizzi, three years of law enforcement experience, and Trooper David Heinisch, one year of law enforcement experience.

Additionally, after the incident in Fort Atkinson, the driver was identified to be a suspect in a bank robbery that occurred in Monona earlier that day.

DCI is leading this investigation and are assisted by Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, Wisconsin State Crime Laboratory, and the DOJ Office of Crime Victim Services. All involved law enforcement are fully cooperating with DCI during this investigation.

DCI is continuing to review evidence and determine the facts of this incident and will turn over investigative reports to the Jefferson County District Attorney when the investigation concludes.

The investigation is ongoing and no further information is currently available. Further information will be released when it becomes available.

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